Squad news

THE EUROPEAN CHANCES

06 Mar 2006
Deportivo will have to take advantage of their next games in order to return to the European positions. At the same time the Galicians must have an eye on the other teams that are fighting around them, their slip-ups could be just as important as Depor's success at the Riazor. It is time to estimate the European chances.

The rest of the month will be very important for Deportivo, Real Sociedad and M??laga will visit the Riazor while the visit to Real Madrid seems to be the most difficult task in March. Currently Deportivo is occupying the eighth spot with 40 points and the fight for the European places is very tight.

Osasuna is fourth with 46 points and behind Javier Aguirre's team, five clubs are fighting all within eight points of each other: Celta (45), Sevilla (44), Villarreal (42), Deportivo (40) and Atl?Štico Madrid (38). Any error could be a huge let-down for any of these teams.

Sevilla and Villarreal have the most complicated games, both clubs have to face Atl?Štico Madrid and Valencia in March while the rest will face teams fighting to avoid the relegation zone, the exception is Osasuna who will play against Barcelona this weekend and Deportivo who will travel to the Santiago Bernabe?? stadium at the end of the month.

In the last liga Betis needed 61 points to qualify for the Champions League, it seems that this year the situation will be very similar. In this sense Depor needs to conquer at least 21 more points if they want to return to the most prestigious tournament of the continent, with 12 matches to be played the Galicians will need then 7 wins in those 12 games (6 at Riazor and 6 away).

The access to the European competitions will also require an improvement in Depor's effectiveness at the Riazor, with only four victories at home the Galicians are missing the train to Europe. This weekend is the first opportunity to recover the lost step, a job that must be done without key players like Andrade and Valer??n.

The matches during March of the teams fighting for the fourth spot in the table are:
Osasuna: Barcelona (home), Espanyol (away), Real Sociedad (home), Athletic Bilbao (away).
Celta: Espanyol (away), Athletic Bilbao (home), Alav?Šs (away), Mallorca (home).
Sevilla: Alav?Šs (away), Mallorca (home), Atl?Štico Madrid (away), Valencia (home).
Villarreal: Mallorca (away), Atl?Štico Madrid (home), Valencia (away), Betis (home).
Deportivo: Real Sociedad (home), Getafe (away), M??laga (home), Real Madrid (away).
Atl?Štico Madrid: Racing (home), Villarreal (away), Sevilla (home), C??diz (away).


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